26 February 2018

Making Regulatory Compliance More Manageable

Although every healthcare organization wants to comply with the numerous regulations governing healthcare delivery, it can be challenging to realize consistent and comprehensive compliance—especially for smaller organizations with limited resources. The good news is that with an overarching and comprehensive strategy you can make the compliance process easier.

By taking a strategic approach that thoroughly addresses the regulations, organizations can enable more reliable rules following without becoming overwhelmed in the complex world of compliance. Robust compliance programs can not only avoid penalties, but also lessen the risk of employee injury or infection, preserve patient privacy and security, support a clean and safe patient care environment, and diminish your ecological footprint. 

Although an organization’s approach may vary based on size and scope of its facility, there are three critical elements that comprise a strategic approach to help you manage compliance more easily. Here’s how to get started: 

1. Leadership commitment. Sustaining a robust compliance program requires a long-term commitment from the top. Organization leaders—including physicians—must make compliance a priority when allocating resources and staff. It can be helpful to designate someone to spearhead the work. Not only can this person be a “cheerleader” for others to help form a culture of compliance, but also ensure the organization takes the necessary steps to consistently follow the rules. This may mean partnering with an outside company like Stericycle that is intimately familiar with the Standards and offers valuable resources that can facilitate compliance.

2. Detailed policies. Almost every regulatory body demands that organizations have defined policies on how they will meet the rules and requirements. Spending time developing these policies is an important step—and you don’t have to reinvent the wheel. There are often samples available from outside resources that you can use to craft your own organization’s customized policies based on industry-accepted programs and best practices.

3. Comprehensive training. Depending on the regulation, staff may need to know how to properly dispose of medical waste, preserve the privacy of patient information, appropriately clean the environment to prevent the spread of infection and so on. Since there are many moving parts to keep track of, it’s essential to have a thorough training program. Web-based tools can be a useful element because staff can access them any time, conveniently fitting training into their busy schedules.

Viewing compliance strategically can improve reliability while streamlining the work. Don’t wait to get started. For more information about how Stericycle can help with this, call 855-602-6279.

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